Serve Louisiana was formed in 1991 as Louisiana Delta Service Corps, part of a three-state program formed to tackle social issues facing communities in the Lower Mississippi River Delta region. Today, nearly three decades later, Serve Louisiana members help nonprofits, public schools, grassroots efforts and community initiatives in the Baton Rouge and New Orleans. Each year, up to 37 members serve full-time, 11-month terms as Volunteer Coordinators, Technology & Social Media Coordinators, Program Outreach & Community Awareness Coordinators, and Program Development Coordinators. It’s a big commitment — but one that consistently helps our partner organizations build greater capacity to serve their community stakeholders. And when our partners are able to do more, everyone wins.
We’re Louisiana’s longest-running AmeriCorps program, a national effort started in 1994 to engage young adults in public service work that helps others and meets critical community needs. Since the program began, more than a million members have contributed more than 1.4 billion service hours across America, tackling pressing problems and mobilizing more than 2.3 million volunteers for the organizations they serve.
To create change across South Louisiana by partnering our young leaders with organizations that improve lives through social justice initiatives, mental and physical health programs, education, youth development and environmental preservation
Continually healthier, more sustainable and more equitable South Louisiana communities for each new generation of children and families
We’re always open to new concepts, ideas and systems that create social change. And we’re nimble enough to shift focus to where needs are greatest, through our people and our partnerships.
We’re here to build a better Louisiana and, in turn, a better nation and better world. We believe current and emerging social justice challenges demand bold actions.
We place a very personal stake in our community and region through collaborative partnerships, progressive training, focused service and quality leadership. Our outlook is long-term.
Serving, leading, training and sharing is the core of who we are. It’s how we help organizations do what they do better, more efficiently and with increased capacity to serve their stakeholders.
When all in our community receive equal measures of opportunity and treatment, everyone benefits. Greater organizational capacity encourages a more equitable community and region.
We’re in this together. We seek progressive partnerships where everyone who’s ready and willing to address the real problems facing our community and region has a place at the table.
The roots of Serve Louisiana extend north, to our neighbors in Arkansas. In the early 1990s, Billie Ann Meyers, then the Director of the Arkansas Division of Volunteerism, envisioned a program to address the pervasive social problems of the lower Mississippi River Delta flood plains. She and her team reached out to leaders in Louisiana and Mississippi to bring the Delta Service Corps to their states. And when federal funds became available through the National and Community Service Trust Act of 1991, the Delta Service Corps was officially born.
In 1992, the first Delta Service Corps members were placed with various nonprofit and governmental organizations across the three-state area to help address education, public safety, the environment and human needs. Hundreds of full- and part-time members served in the first few years, many of them senior citizens.
New legislation passed in 1993, enabling the funding of hundreds of national service “AmeriCorps” programs. The first AmeriCorps grants were awarded for the 1994-95 program year, and by January 1995, the Louisiana Delta Service Corps had successfully incorporated as a new nonprofit organization. Over the subsequent years, the three-state model became increasingly decentralized, with each state delivering programs tailored to its own population’s needs and challenges. In 2017, Louisiana Delta Service Corps officially became Serve Louisiana, a new name for our long-standing mission of improving lives across South Louisiana.